Along with our many wonderful Michigan musicians and dance leaders, we also gladly welcome The Cranky Jig Lords, our band, caller Carol Ormond, Scandinavian Dance Master Bruce Sagan, plus the fabulous foot percussion of Shelia Graziano and Adam Wheeler. Read more about all of them below. Better yet, register for the dance and see them in person!
The Cranky Jig Lords are Sam Bartlett, Kendall Rogers, and Brad Battey.
Sam Bartlett is a traditional musician known throughout the United States contra dance circuit for his mandolin, banjo, and guitar playing as well as his original music. His compositions have been profiled on NPR and his playing has been featured on the Thistle & Shamrock, and in two Ken Burns documentaries. As a native Vermonter, Sam grew up going to contra dances and has been a member of a broad swath of well-known ensembles: Wild Asparagus, the Clayfoot Strutters, Reckless Ramblers, the Sevens, Notorious, and Rodney Miller’s Stringrays. When not doing music, he is a performer, writer, and illustrator of Stuntology (those kind of dumb but hilarious maneuvers humans do when avoiding boredom).
Kendall Rogers is a Kentucky native now living in Texas, a piano and bodhran player who also dabbles in accordion, whistle, and DADGAD guitar. He grew up amid the rich folk music and dance traditions of Kentucky, with traditional dance music from Ireland, Scotland, Denmark, England, and North America. Kendall has performed across the US (and twice in Denmark). He plays for all sorts of folk dance events - contradances, English Country Dances, Scottish Country Dances, and the like. When those outlets aren't available, he also enjoys playing at Irish sessions, Celtic (and other) music festivals, in pubs or on stage.
Brad Battey is an accomplished and innovative fiddler, and if you have danced in Michigan you know his superb playing. A lifetime Michigan fiddler, he is skilled in Old Timey, Celtic, English, Swing, and Scandinavian music. Brad can be found playing dances around Ann Arbor with Uncle Lu, The Ruffwater String Band, Big Fun, and many other outstanding southeast Michigan musicians. He has staffed dance weekends from Colorado to Denmark and Cape Breton to Texas. Along with his fiddling partner Bruce Sagan, Brad recently produced an album of Swedish-style music composed by American musicians. Brad has also been known to play nyckelharpa for English and Scandinavian couple dancing.
Carol Ormand, of Madison, WI, is a wildly popular caller and dance author. She has been calling contra and square dances since 1990 and later added English Country dance leadership to her repertoire. She is a veteran caller for over 100 dance weekends and festivals in the US, Canada, England, and Denmark. She plays fiddle too! A strong dance supporter, she has served on the Country Song and Dance Society and a number of regional dance and folk arts organizations. She has served as Program Director for CDSS' English and American Week at Pinewoods and for the inaugural three years of CDSS' Dance, Music and Spice Week here at Camp Cavell. She also enjoys dancing Morris, rapper sword, longsword, and Scandinavian dances, and has been in many performing groups over the years.
Bruce Sagan is a master of Scandinavian music and dance, playing fiddle, Norwegian hardingfele, Swedish nyckelharpa (keyed fiddle), and tussefløyte (recorder). He has visited Scandinavia numerous times to work with fiddlers and collect material, and is the author of many of his own tunes. Initially, Bruce was drawn to folk music and dance through the melodies and rhythms of the Balkan region. He has played and taught music from the Balkans for many years. Teaching and playing for dances, workshops, and concerts in the United States, Europe, and Australia, he has taught at a variety of folk music and dance camps and workshops, he has also served as music director for Scandinavian Week (and its later incarnation, Nordic Fiddles and Feet) in West Virginia and Stockton Folk Dance Camp in California.
Sheila discovered her passion for dance as a child, when she started taking tap dance lessons at the Shirley St. Mary School of Dance in Detroit. As a young adult, her enthusiasm for percussive dance grew with the discovery of Appalachian clogging and other forms of traditional dance. She spent several years taking workshops from masters who passed through Michigan, often meeting and working at them at events like the Wheatland Dance Camp and myriad music and dance festivals.
Meeting other like-minded people led to the formation of dance performance ensembles such as The Crosstown Cloggers, Crow’s Feet, and The CommonWealth Dance Collective. Always one to share her knowledge, passion and expertise, Sheila teaches workshops at camps and festivals in the midwest and in Canada, often in tandem with performances. She also holds ongoing workshops for teenagers (The Saline Fiddlers) and adults in southeast Michigan.
Graziano is a four-time recipient of the Michigan Traditional Arts Apprenticeship Program grant -- thrice as a "master,” and once as an apprentice.
Some of Sheila’s mentors over the years include Shirley St. Mary (tap dance, "mid-century," 1950s - 1960s), Eileen Carson, Ira Bernstein, Sandy Silva, Sharon Leahy, Evie Ladin, Abby Ladin, Rodney Sutton, Benoit Bourque, Tony Barrand, and Chanda Gibson Leahy.
Adam began dancing at the age of 10 after seeing the Cottonwood Cloggers perform locally in Southeastern Michigan. In his teen years, Adam danced with various clogging groups across the state of Michigan. He also joined a youth performance group called the Earth Angels, which brought to life the music and spirit of the 50s and 60s.
Adam danced at the International Clogging Expo parade in D.C. (2002). He, along with dance partner Laura Laymon, competed at the 2005 Junior Olympics in New Orleans and took home a silver medal.
Adam attended Mars Hill University in North Carolina where he joined the Bailey Mountain Cloggers. The team claimed 5 national titles over the course of his time with BMC. Adam also served on the leadership team and as team captain his senior year. In 2010, Adam was inducted into the America’s Clogging Hall of Fame All American Team. Adam has had the wonderful opportunities to represent clogging and the United States at international folk festivals with BMC in Spain (2009) and Germany (2011).
Adam is a also a proud member of American Racket, and has traveled with the group to Korea (2012), North Carolina (2017), and Brazil (2018) to similar international folk festivals.
After returning to Michigan in 2014, Adam reunited with Sheila Graziano and began dancing again with the CommonWealth Dance Collective, as well as teaching clogging to the Saline Fiddlers Philharmonic, a local high-school performance group.